Quoted From A Fellow Traveler:

Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love truly, Laugh uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you smile. Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we're here we should dance.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Heading To Denali

We are heading out of Fairbanks (North Pole) Alaska.
Joyce wants to visit Santa before we leave.
I stayed with Casey while Joyce did her thing

One more stop brings us to Dredge #8. They have some interesting things on the Pipeline. The cutaway of the pipe shows how they clean the interior of the pipe.
There was also a train ride. The ladies are friends we made on our tour.
That's dredge 8 but we didn't tour it because we already did a dredge tour.
Then we did some panning for gold
Look close and you will see about $20 worth of gold.
A building full of gift shops.
Sitting on the train waiting to leave.
Junk along the way.
Another quick stop
If I look worn out, that's because I am!
You didn't tell me that there was a bear behind me.
Some of the things found in Alaska.......no, not Joyce!
This is amazing.
Babe was found by a miner.
Back on the road
Another bridge.

The town of Nenana

Every year this thing is put on the ice in the Nenana river.
The sign say it all. They have a contest where for $2.50 you enter a guess at the day and time that the ice breaks up. Last year they had people from all over the world enter and the seven winner split over $300,000.00.
Yes...we entered our guess.

Further down the highway, we came to a small campground / gift shop.
They had some really neat stuff outside.
In Alaska, they call these snow machines and this is an old one.
Label on the back.
Gift shop, note the smoke at the chimney. The wood stove was fired up inside and was nice warming up to it.
Found this Redneck snow machine out front.
Ma & Pa keeping warm.
Big bear
OK, time to move on!
Mountains are getting closer.

Those are clouds not snow.
Getting close to Denali
The train still runs here, but I'm sure it is probably just a tourist ride.
Here we are finally. The campground is in the center of town located behind a line of gift shops.
The mountains are directly across the street.
Time to kick back and relax.

Fairbanks Day 3 The Arctic Circle

Day 3 and were are on a tour to the Arctic Circle. This ride is eight hours long driving there, and just over an hour to fly back.
The Dalton Highway was constructed for the building of the Pipeline so we will see a lot of it.
 Along the Dalton, we stopped at this Gift Shop that was built by the family. The couple has 24 children and 47 grand children. Most (18) were adopted.
 This is the bus we took, there were nine of us plus the driver.
 The Gift Shop was sell so burls, you can make some beautiful stuff with these.

Here we are at the start of the Dalton. If you ever watched Ice Road Truckers. this is the road they travel.

The road is gravel but smooth.

We are heading for Coldfoot

 We stopped to check out the Pipeline

The Pipeline is not secured to the support structure. The pipe must be allowed to move during earthquakes and temperature changes.

You can see the bumper stop to the left of the pipe.

I'll bet you would like to know what those fin towers are for. Click HERE to find out.

The pipeline is visible for most of our ride.

Zig Zag

Rest stop

This is a truckers stop. There are showers and rooms if you want to spend a night.

Back on the road

This was a nice stop

The landscape went on forever.

The temp. was about 62 degrees

Some Indians homesteaded here when they heard the pipeline was coming. They didn't last!

Approx. half of the 800 mile s of pipeline are above the ground. Below, you can see the pipe coming out of the ground.

If you noticed, there is very little tree growth where the pipeline is above the ground. The reason is because the ground is permafrost.

We felt like Ice Road Truckers!!!!

Here we are at the Arctic Circle

We got to step over the line.

Time to move on to Coldfoot where we will be flying out. We are passing one of the pump stations where the oil is pushed along. The pumps are powered by jet engines.

The workers live here for weeks on end and make big bucks.

As you can see by the sign, Deadhorse is 244 miles away.

We have made it to Coldfoot but there is a delay on one of the planes. We have an hour to kill.

Info. on Coldfoot

They have a diner and motel on site.

Here's our plane.

And I was lucky enough to get the co-pilot seat.

I always have loved flying and have been lucky enough to pilot a glider and a T6 Navy trainer.

Always wanted to get my license but never had did. The pilot did let me get this shot.

Flying at 1200 feet, the view was great.

There were still some spotty fires so it was a little smoky in areas. 

Here's the airport. Made it in just over an hour.
Video of landing

The end of a long 10 hour day of travel. Time to call it a day.